Samsung updates its M.2 SSDs for OEMs with its Polaris controller

— 12:04 PM on March 23, 2016

Samsung unveiled a pair of high-performance M.2 SSDs for OEMs at its SSD Forum Japan event, according to AnandTech. The drives, called the SM961 and PM961, are both available in capacities from 128GB to 1TB. Both drives use Samsung's new Polaris controller, a five-core, eight-channel chip. This updated controller replaces the UBX controller used in the popular PM951. Both drives use the NVMe protocol.

Image: PCWatch

The SM961 is the top-end model. It uses Samsung’s 3D V-NAND in MLC mode. Samsung's spec sheet claims impressive performance figures: 3200MB/s sequential reads, 1800MB/s sequential writes, 450K read IOPS, and 400K write IOPS.

The lower-end PM961 uses TLC 3D V-NAND, but it still pulls off impressive numbers, especially in sequential reads. Samsung says the drive can hit 3000MB/s on sequential reads, a mere 6% slower than the more expensive SM961. The PM961's other performance numbers are also impressive, although not as close to the higher-end model.  The PM961 is specced for 1150MB/s sequential writes, 360K read IOPS, and 110K write IOPS. These drives should hit OEM channels in the second half of the year.

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